Thursday, 14 June 2012

Yashin - Sushi Gems

Last week was tough; physical pain, lack of sleep, emotional torture, overwhelming sense of insecurity, over-spending, PowerShot died, Tsonga losing to Djokovic... in short, my fuse jumped. I'm starting to see the light at the end of this tunnel, however, and to cheer myself on, it's Yashin time.

This cosy sushi bar on High Street Ken oozes elegance; black rabbit lamps against white walls and shiny green tiles with neon lights that spells Yashin's belief "Without soy sauce". I guess the owner cringe the same way I do when he saw people drown everything in soy sauce. The style and elegance come with a hefty pricetag though, which is why I came for the more wallet-friendly lunch. All served with miso soup and house salad.

Six itamae working at the sushi counter. Six. All diligently plating up dish after dish of immaculate sushi gems. I tried, I really did try resisting the appetisers. But they looked so good...

Kaki Su fresh maldon wild oysters with spicy tosazu jelly
These had a remarkably clean taste to them. Each time the crisp sac lets out the heavy flavours of  creamy minerals, the jelly and sauce would leap in to neutralise the powerful gush and tame the zinc in. The droplets of chilli oil were mild and added a louder finishing touch to the slurp. Graceful.

Parrot fish with Spicy Yuzu
Parrot fish has a slightly tougher skin with firm flesh, but unlike the meek flavours of bream and bass, this was succulent with lots of sweetness locked in. The yuzu sauce was gentle, not spicy, more like a underlying heat that came afterwards. Again, balance.

Omakase Eight
If Shiori was presenting sushi fine art, Yashin definitely exhibits impressionism. 

The salmon with deep-fried sushi rice stood out; the crunchy case was slowly softened by the ponzu jelly, and the crisp was a nice change - maybe the rice crispies in sushi idea wasn't so odd. Seared toro with bonito flakes, as expected, dissolved in mouth with trails of fish oils. There's so much pleasure in having this in my mouth...
Needless to say, the sushi rice was prepared to meticulous perfection; each grain of rice with the most gentle hint of vinegar, shaped firmly with on-the-dot pressure, but maintaining the rounded textures that was almost gentle on tongue.

The others were tuna with mustard dressing, seared yellowtail with sundried tomato, sea bass with strawberry, trout with marinated carrots, grouper with chopped tomato. Each piece was brimming with finesse. Tuna roll with cucumber and rocket was inevitably less exciting, and I thought the salmon roll (with lunch set) was creamier.

Salmon Sushi Lunch - 5 pieces of salmon nigiri and spicy salmon roll
This set lunch is a budget version of the omakase; bonito, sundried tomato paste, mustard dressing, chopped garlic and ponzu jelly, just all on salmon. The beautiful streaks of fat aside, it was mesmerising how the fish melted onto the sushi rice; as if it was salmon sashimi was meshed into paste to mingle with each grain of rice, and melted into the most harmonious mouthful of oceanic bliss.

Each piece was distinctively different. My favourite was the sundried tomato paste, its subtle smokiness slowly pushed through from the salmon and slowly transpired onto the rice. Absolutely gorgeous.

I was hoping for some flamed seared ones too, but not this time.

The dedication and persistence at Yashin are incredible. The angle at which the itamae blow-torch the sushi differs for every kind of fish, and so does the slicing pattern and the depth of each score. And all these efforts were so evident, I could taste it. I could taste the perfect intricate balance, and how one tiny piece of accompaniment on the fish played a huge part in the balance. 

I've had sushi, plenty of it. Just nothing like this. Yashin takes sushi to a whole new level.

1A Argyll Road
W8 7DB
Tel: 0207 938 1536

You may also like: ShioriAtari-yaYoshino

Yashin Sushi Bar on Urbanspoon

Square Meal


  1. oh my gosh, i think i need to book pronto. you have my mouth watering!!

    doesn't seem like a good few weeks for you with bad luck? hope it all goes away soon! :)

  2. ooo.. let me know if you prefer this to Sushi of Shiori after your visit... I can't quite make my mind up:)

    I think I'm just having a moan, holiday feels ages away and the british summer is not living up to my expectation...

  3. I will def let you know, but I must confess I like a bit of soya sauce & wasabi with my sushi! lol.

    British summer is never that great anymore, maybe you should take a trip back to hk? hehe. I'm going next wk, but won't be much of a holiday as I'm sorting out my wedding stuff. But at least I'll be eating some yummy food!

  4. Congrats on getting married!! I hope you don't get too stressed out sorting your wedding:) Super jealous of you going back to HK too... I miss home

  5. Wow i can say that this is another great article as expected of this blog.Bookmarked this site.. purple gemstone

  6. I was reading your article and wondered if you had considered creating an ebook on this subject. Your writing would sell it fast. You have a lot of writing talent. unique garnet rings

  7. McAfee Activate 25 digit code – Enter your McAfee activation code to access, download, install, activate, renew and transfer your McAfee Subscription and stay protected from viruses and malware. | Download, Install & Activate McAfee McAfee Activate – Since the world is growing every day with new digital technologies, cyber threats, malware, data, and damaging infections have also become more and more advanced with each day. These cyber infections damage a device or files in various ways. They will enter into a device in multiple ways, while a user is trying to install a file or opens a malicious link while browsing. Once it affects a device, the device will get slow, applications & programs fail to run properly, valuable and precious files will vanish or get corrupt, and more importantly, there will also be the risk of data being stolen. The best solution to prevent your device and data from cyber threats, malware, viruses, and other harmful attacks is to get McAfee at

  8. I would like to thank you for the efforts you have made in writing this article. I am hoping the same best work from you in the future as well.. website

  9. It is a great website.. The Design looks very good.. Keep working like that!. umrah packages

  10. Very nice article, I enjoyed reading your post, very nice share, I want to twit this to my followers. Thanks!. more info

  11. Wow i can say that this is another great article as expected of this blog.Bookmarked this site.. go there

  12. This is a great article. I am a new user of this site so here I saw multiple articles and posts posted by this site, I am curious more interest in some of them hope you will give more information on this topic in your next articles. concrete demolition contractors

  13. Thank you for such valuable sharing.
    read more

  14. Thanks so much for this.

  15. Thanks so much for this. tree service

  16. This is decent and educational blog Website

  17. Really nice and interesting post